Are you ready to take your first steps into the market and build a brand that sweeps competitors under the rug and customers off of their feet? Carving your place in today’s corporate world can be difficult, but finding a way to stand out from the crowd and distinguish your services from the pack can help you sustain momentum as you grow. As you begin to build your brand, your first priority needs to be protecting the assets and ideas that help set you apart. Trademarks play a key role in helping businesses protect their creative assets as well as ensure that other companies cannot use them for their own gain. Learn more about the basics of trademarking below!
What Are Trademarks?
The world of trademarking refers to a vast array of elements that can be used to distinguish your brand from competitors. According to the Government of Canada, trademarks can be best defined as “a combination of letters, words, sounds, or designs that distinguishes one company’s goods or services from those of others in the marketplace.” Once your brand has become established, trademarks become synonymous with the reputation and quality of your company in the public eye. Thus, because trademarks are tied so closely to your consumer perception, they are one of the most important pieces of intellectual property you can own.
With the umbrella of trademarks, there are two different categories to consider.
An ordinary trademark applies to words, designs, flavours or tastes, colours, textures, scents, moving images, 3D shapes, methods of packaging or holograms, that are used to distinguish your products or services from competitors.
Certification marks can be licensed to multiple people or companies, and are used to show that certain goods or services comply with a defined standard.
Trademarking any of the above items protects you against competitors using your specific assets for profit, as well as creative theft, fraud, and more.
What Doesn’t Count As a Trademark
Though they may serve similar purposes in terms of their underlying function, the following are not the same as a trademark:
- Industrial designs
- Integrated circuit topographies
Each of the above will have their own unique purpose when it comes to building and protecting your brand, and it is important for all new businesses to work alongside a legal team that can help you discern exactly what you need to move forward.
Commonly Asked Questions
At Paperclip Law we’re proud to partner with businesses from all backgrounds to help with their legal needs. From accountants to industrial services, we’ve got you covered. Below are a few FAQs regarding trademarks to keep in mind.
Can I Trademark A Logo?
Yes! Logos are used to distinguish your products from competitors and should be trademarked early on.
How Much Does A Trademark Cost?
Filing for a trademark registration costs $250 online or $300 for other methods of submission. An additional $200 is required upon the acceptance of your application for certification.
What Information is Required?
Applications include a wide array of details, including contact information, representation or description of the trademark, and more.
How Long Do Trademarks Take?
The acceptance process can be up to a year, if not slightly longer due to the high detailed review that each application is subject to. Ensuring that all information in your application is accurate and up to date can help expedite the process.
Ready To Get Started?
If you’re ready to take the next step and get started trademarking your assets, Paperclip Law is here to help. Contact us now to learn more!